Medical condition sends processor operator to hospital

Safety Alert Type: 
Workers
Location: 
North Fraser Forest Service Road (northwest of Prince George)
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2014-01-05
Company Name: 
Stones Bay Holdings Ltd.
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

A processor operator was limbing a deck when his right foot went numb, followed by the entire right side of his body. He called co-workers and began heading for help. The operator was confused (indicating he was having difficulty trying to use his cell phone - after the fact).

As a co-worker was heading to help, he noticed the processor ‘walking’ down the road towards him. There was a bridge between them and the road was narrow so the co-worker backed-up to a pull-out around the corner.

Time passed and the co-worker thought the processor should have been to him by now so he eased around the corner and saw the machine had straddled the guardrail of the bridge and fell over onto the boom side (photos from the scene show the machine walked right off the bridge; there were no skid marks or evidence the operator tried to stop).

The co-worker immediately went and assisted the operator out of the machine through the escape hatch and into a second co-worker’s pick-up before heading for town. They met the operator’s father (a log truck driver) who then took his son to hospital in Prince George.

Preliminary diagnosis was for a pre-existing, non-work-related illness that the operator was unaware of. Treatment is ongoing.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

Findings

• The root cause was determined to be an unknown, underlying medical condition.

• To prevent incidents like this, discussions at safety meetings were held regarding health issues and if they arise and continue (in this case a severe headache for 3 or more days), get it checked out as it can be a sign of a larger problem.

For more information on this submitted alert: 

For more information: Darren McQueen (250) 996-8912

File attachments
Medical condition sends processor operator to hospital.pdf
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